Monday, January 9, 2012

Paris pied-à-terre

As I mentioned, while in Paris I stayed in an apartment instead of a hotel. I can't recommend this move highly enough!
Located on the Ile St Louis in the center of the Seine, the apartment was located in an early 18th century building on the 3rd floor (or 2nd floor as it's known in Europe). The open shutters seen above were the windows in my living room.The courtyard had this great old hosebib for horses to drink from as the building was built after the island was known for its cows (I assume!).
The stairs were open and featured this great Victorian tiled floor on the ground level. While not climate controlled, you were shielded from the elements by great casement windows.The banister on the main level was ornate and featured beautiful marble floors. Notice how worn the stone treads are!The third floor was simpler as these were less grand apartments with terra cotta tile and a less ornate banister.Also, rather than marble treads, here they were wood.This was the doorway to my apartment. It may look normal, but was barely 6'-0" tall (a more typical door height would be 7'-0"). Thankfully I'm shorter than that and didn't have to worry about whacking my head!The apartment was recently renovated and featured some beautiful updated french furnishings in light grey tones with moss green accents which fit so well with the city.





Behind the sitting area was a small dining table where I would write my daily blog recaps!




The modern kitchen came from Ikea I believe and had everything I needed for small meals and snacks. This is where the ingenius trash can was housed which I canNOT find in the US for my own apartment! Does anyone have any ideas? Being the top floor, a skylight flooded the apartment with light even on the grayest of days.My bedroom was small and cozy but all that was needed for the stay. Sconces took up less room than table lamps on nightstands which were cantilevered from the wall.My bedroom faced the courtyard of one of the many hotel particuleurs for which the island is known and ring the island with river views.
The detail of the surrounding walls of the courtyard was really beautiful. On your visit to Paris, or any city for that matter, I would recommend an apartment rental from one of the many companies which offer them. You won't regret it, particularly in Paris!

29 comments:

David said...

Staying in an apartment lets you get more of a feel of what living there is like, and they're such a deal compared to hotels. Also, what a beautiful place!

I think you're going to have to McGyver your trash can. Can't wait to see what you come up with.

Linda Merrill said...

This apartment looks fabulous! Re: the trash can, couldn't you get a small side load step operated lidded trash can, mount it to the door and attach a string from the lid to the back of the cabinet? Door opens, lid raises, et voila. You should be able to McGyver something. It's a great idea!

Francine Gardner said...

I love the location, Isle Saint Louis is truly special.I have always done the hotel route in Paris as i never stay more than 3 of 4 days. But for longer stays, i have rented flats and houses and agree with you, it makes a trip feel more special, as if one is really part of the city.

pve design said...

Love the tones of Paris and the hues used in decorating that space. It all looks very soothing and a nice spot to come home to. I much prefer to stay in apartments vs hotels which can immediately make one feel right at home.
pve

ArchitectDesign™ said...

After long, cold, windy and WET days, it was lovely to have a home to come back to!

Jennings and Gates said...

Stunning pictures. I love the colors and the courtyards. Especially charming horse "fountain.""

Windlost said...

It looks beautiful and wonderfully civilized compared to the places most people are forced to stay in Paris. We always stay out by the Pere Lachaise in a spacious apartment, but I like the idea of staying on the inimitable Ile St-Louis! Every time I walked around there I would think "who gets to live here?". Apparently YOU!

How was the price?

Terri

The Devoted Classicist said...

Did you see the Hotel Lambert? I understand there will be another de Rede auction in March (although it is not on the Sotheby's website) and that the mansion is being renovated for a single family residence.

ArchitectDesign™ said...

Classicist -yes -it was a block away but you can't really see it at the moment. Scaffolding.

Daniel James Shigo said...

How utterly magical..

Mark D. Ruffner said...

You've definitely sold me on apartment-renting in Paris. As for the automatic kitchen trashcan lid, I think you should be able to duplicate it with plumbing materials. It's basically the same principle as the float inside a toilet tank.

Anonymous said...

Looks like a great place to stay and I will remember to contact you for more info. Cheer's, Homer.

columnist said...

I too stayed in the Ile St Louis, in rue Bude - a a friend's apartment. He was away, and very kindly lent it to me. So central, and so easy to get around by the best way possible - on foot!

Paisley Curtain said...

It is a very nice apartment. I think staying at an apartment instead of a hotel gives a better taste of life in any city.

Next time we go towards Paris I would bother you to get the information of the company you used to arrange your accommodation.

Karena said...

Stefan really a beautiful apartment with all of the amenities I love this concept and would definitely try going this route!

xoxo
Karena

Art by Karena

Todd said...

Maybe it's just me but I love the wood treads on the stairs. Such a nice contrast to the tiles! What a beautiful little apartment, you were so lucky to have that for the week! I think I may have found an under counter trash bin for you that's reasonable. I'll email it to you.

somecozynight said...

Lovely apartment and I have always loved the Ile St Louis. Might be tempted to rent an apartment next time...thanks for this post!

Gwen Driscoll said...

This looks awesome & just perfect. So glad your trip was a success. Happy New Year!

HRH The Duchess of State said...

What a beautiful & tranquil looking space dahhling... it seems that it set the tone for your visit.

cate said...

What a great apartment. Any chance you would share the contact info for renting this apartment? Thank you

The Down East Dilettante said...

Absolutely brilliant---I'm hiring you to make the arrangements for my next trip.

Indeed a charming apartment. I'm a sucker for gray. Glad you had fun.

John Armstrong said...

Forget the outside, from the inside the apartment has every comfort that one would need. i think it looks really impressive. What about the costs, i mean how much did you save in staying in the apartment as compared to a hotel?

Interior Design Directory said...

Great enough if you are in the middle of Paris. I can not ask for more than staying in this apartment. This is perfect enough for me.

Janelle McCulloch said...

Would you be able to share the contact details of that lovely apartment? Some of us would love to stay there next time we're in Paris. Beautiful photos too!
Really enjoying your blog,
Janelle McCulloch | LIbrary of Design

Ann said...

"horsebib" ah better than "equine drinking fountain" as I had been calling it!

Pat said...

We're going to Paris in August (yes I know all Parisians leave then). My first choice is a home exchange, but I have a line on some apartments if that doesn't work. We're also visiting at My French Country Home for a week and at a friend's house in La Roque. The kids are tres excited .

cv said...

We're planning a trip to Paris later this year and would love more info on "your" apartment, if you wouldn't mind sharing. It looks perfect for our get away.
Also, I always enjoy your blog.
cv

Miss B. said...

Your Paris pictures are getting me stoked for my trip on Thursday! Thanks Stephen!

mimarlikla_istigal said...

Your apartment looks beautiful. Would you be able to share the contact details of that lovely apartment?
Thank you.
Nihal